Commissioner at large represents all

Dear Editor,

I am writing this letter in support of Clint Loomis for City Commissioner at large.

I have known Clint for many years. Not only was he a caring, talented and dedicated art teacher, he was always active in our local school system. Now he has retired from teaching and he has invested in a downtown business. Clint is actively involved with many activities that make Lewistown a better place to live. He is a leader in ROWL (Recycle Our Waste Lewistown) program; he is involved with the hospice program and is a vital member of the Art Center.

I know that Clint would be a great listener for everybody and would be a fiscally responsible commissioner. I worry when some ads in the newspaper show that our levy has doubled from 1998 to 2013 by using incorrect rounding; it was less. I am going to use figures from 2003 to 2013 for my percentage increase. This would probably be the longest term of any of the present council members. Plus, this way I am not cherry-picking numbers. The city’s expenditures went from $2,116,804 to $3,232,860. This represents a 52.7 percent increase. Using this number, and correct math, our actual annual average percent increase is only 4.3 percent. Maybe our present commissioners aren’t doing too badly, and we really don’t need to “drain the swamp.” 

I know that all four invited candidates at Wednesday’s forum profess to be pro-business. Actually, I hope all of the uninvited five are, too. But if pro-business means relaxing safety standards and getting rid of needed regulations to save money, that would concern me. That may be pro-business, but it doesn’t sound as if it is pro-consumer. The city has adopted the codes used by the state. Why should Lewistown have less stringent safety rules than other cities in Montana? When I walk into a business, I want to be assured that I will safely walk out.

The commissioner at large has a huge responsibility to represent all of Lewistown, not just special interest groups. There are too many good things happening in Lewistown for a commissioner to be a one or two issue candidate. Clint does not have an ax to grind, and would be a fair and impartial representative for all the people of Lewistown whom he would represent.

Jim Hamling

Lewistown

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